My image of Qatar is of a hot, dry, arid country. Is there the infrastructure to deal with heavy rain? Still, given the precipitation, you ask some very good questions. I’ll respond to them on this very long bullet train journey on my way home from the conference where I could confirm that nothing in epistemic cognition (EC) is known in Japan (at least in the formation I’ve often mentioned in these boards).
I think that I need to abandon any hope of using grounded theory (GT) in my research design. You are right; there are hypotheses in place, but this is not necessarily inconsistent with Charmaz’s (2006) formulation of GT as she recognises the implausibility of a researcher fully bracketing their theoretical knowledge of a field, and Strauss and Corbin (1990) allow forcing as a way of relating emergent GT theorising to accommodate existing theory. However, this kind of theorising is fundamentally different from that in a positivistic research plan that places the hypotheses at the start and at the base (Cohen, Manion, & Morrison, 2011). I have come to my decision to forgo GT for two reasons. The first is that those seminary EC studies (e.g. Baxter Magolda, 1992; Belenky, Clinchy, & Goldberger, 1999; Perry, 1970) were all phenomenological and were conducted longitudinally. The sense of credibility (Cohen et al., 2011) remains high, probably as a direct result of using the same research participants over the years, while synchronic snapshots based on paper-and-pencil survey instruments tend to produce lower internal reliability ratings (Hofer & Pintrich, 2002). But I cannot do a diachronic, longitudinal study at the EdD level. On reflection, I suspect that a paper-and-pencil snapshot would not be markedly different from a snapshot series of interviews in terms of the EC stages that would be described. The second reason is the practical problems that interviews in a foreign language bring up. I would need to hire a translator to aid me in either the data collection itself or in the data analysis. Yet, without training that person, the internal reliability of the interview would be in jeopardy (Yin, 2006).
Very briefly, I’d also like to address your contention that quantitative results need to be normally distributed. While this is true if when parametric statistics are used, there are non-parametric tools that can be used when the assumptions of the parametric tool use have not been met (Cohen et al., 2011).
By the way, why do you feel that Wang’s title is racist?
Best wishes from a flying bullet train,
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Belenky, M. F., Clinchy, B. M., & Goldberger, N. R. (1999). Women’s Ways of Knowing. New Directions for Student Services, 88(Winter), 17–27.
Charmaz, K. (2006). Constructing grounded theory: A practical guide through qualitative analysis. London: Sage.
Cohen, L., Manion, L., & Morrison, K. (2011). Research Methods in Education. Professional Development in Education (7th ed.). Abingdon: Routledge.
Corbin, J. M., & Strauss, A. (1990). Grounded theory research: Procedures, canons, and evaluative criteria.Qualitative Sociology, 13(1), 3–21. http://doi.org/10.1007/BF00988593
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Perry, W. G. (1970). Forms of Intellectual and Ethical Development in the College Years: A Scheme. New York: Holt, Rinehart, and Winston.
Yin, R. K. (2006). Mixed methods research: Are the methods genuinely integrated or merely parallel? Research in the Schools, 13(1), 41–48. http://doi.org/Article